An eco-friendly greenhouse prototype has been built at Izarbel
The Berotegi project’s goal is a 12.5m2, sustainable, hydroponic, energy self-sufficient greenhouse. It is built at the foot of the ESTIA 2 building, and is managed by ESTIA students who hope to make it a meeting place for the Izarbel Technology park’s stakeholders.
“This is an environmental awareness project designed as a learning platform with four main themes: renewable energy, represented by photovoltaic panels, organically-sourced materials for construction, rainwater recovery, polymer and plastic reduction,” explained Enzo Chalons, an engineering student at ESTIA and one of the project’s main instigators.
The Berotegi project was launched five years ago. It materialised when the greenhouse was built two months ago. “70% of the greenhouse’s wooden frame is composed of recovered wood. Basque firms and Basque craftsmen collaborated in the project, for example Goicoechea, which gave us a ‘pot’ for the main water tank”, reported Enzo Chalons. The technology taught at ESTIA will be well represented: microprocessors and sensors have been installed in the greenhouse.
The Berotegi project is underpinned by innovative agricultural techniques such as “hydroponic and ultraponic cultivation,” above-ground horticultural techniques which do not need soil, or pesticides and which use rainwater. The first plants will be planted during the month of May. Around a dozen students from ESTIA took part in the project whose aim is also to develop awareness of environmental issues among the ESTIA’s students and lecturers, as well as the employees at the Izarbel Technology Park.
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